A crocodile blamed for deadly attacks in the southern Philippines has been confirmed as the biggest in captivity.
The saltwater crocodile, named Lolong, was caught last September in Bunawan, Agusan del Sur province. It measures 6.17 metres (20.24 ft) and weighs more than a ton, said a Guinness World Records spokeswoman, Anne-Lise Rouse.
Lolong is responsible for an influx of tourists to the remote town where it was captured. Bunawan mayor Edwin Cox Elorde said the news sparked celebrations among the 37,000 inhabitants, but was also causing concern that more giant crocodiles might be lurking in a nearby marshland and creek where villagers fish.
About 100 people led by Elorde pulled the crocodile from a creek using a rope and then hoisted it by crane on to a truck. It was named after a government official who died from a heart attack after travelling to Bunawan to help capture the animal, Elorde said.
He claimed to have seen a larger crocodile escape where Lolong was captured, and villagers remain wary of fishing in Bunawan at night. He said he has a new team of hunters and would seek government permission to start looking for the reptile.
And a bigger one may still be out there. Odds are that a bigger croc may be out there somewhere but this is a place where they are left mostly undisturbed (unless they eat someone) and get massively huge. It’s capture and record-breaking size is a mixed blessing for the locals. They are proud of the biodiversity of their environment but have much to fear from formidable preditors.